Just info for you--I have 4 cats who basically grew up together.  They're
about a year or so apart in age and all came in as kittens and all tested
neg for FELV as each came into my home.  In 2/04, my Tucson who was then 4,
started feeling poorly, wouldn't eat (which for her is a BIG thing!).  I had
a very good vet at the time who on a hunch tested her for FELV and she
showed positive on the Elissa and more ISA  I had the other 3 immediately
tested and they showed neg then and are still neg.  I switched vets to one
who had more experience with FELV and both vets said that it is very
possible that test on a very young kitten can show neg though they have the
virus and that you really can't be 100% sure until a kitten is 6mos-1 year.
Further literature I read basically concurs with that.  I vaccinated my neg
cats and everyone has been fine.

At around the same time, I brought in a stray, Romeo (who was around 4 or
5), who I had been feeding outside for a couple of years.  I had seen him
every single day and he was never sick!  I had him tested and lo and behold,
he was FELV+.  I had made the decision (actually, there wasn't ever really a
decision-LOL) to mix my 4 cats so mixing in Romeo was a no-brainer for me.
My other 4 had all eaten out of the same dishes, used the same litter boxes,
groomed each other, gave each other the occasionally swipe with their claws,
shared toys, and on and on--and nobody came down w. FELV even though they
had never been vaccinated.  

Tucson has had occasional episodes of very low white blood count and my vet
has treated her w. immune-regulin and she's rebounded each time.  She's a
hefty gal (18 lbs) and I feed all of them Wellness canned food and just a
bit of dry food for their teeth.  Sadly, a couple of months ago, Romeo
developed lymphoma and within 2 weeks, he became so ill and suffering so
much that I had to put him down.  Up until that last week, though, he was
fine, fat, and just a joy.  Though I miss him terribly, I keep reminding
myself that he wouldn't have had those 4 good years if he had stayed

Bottom line--I think there are a whole lot more kitties out there who are
positive that nobody ever knows about.  You'll hear all variations of my
story on this board and come to see that though kittens are particularly
susceptible to the life-threatening infections that FELV allows to fester,
many of those kittens go on to long perfectly normal lives.  Unfortunately,
most of the "statistics" on FELV are based on kittens who succumb--they
never reflect the adult cats who have never been diagnosed or tested.

-----Original Message-----
[] On Behalf Of Stefania
Sent: Tuesday, February 10, 2009 11:03 AM
Subject: Re: [Felvtalk] PCR test reliability

> Give them suppotive cats good food and lots of love. 
Yes, I already use good food of quality and in fact I have this infected cat
since 2007 and he's living very well. I hope my older too will regain energy
and be well again, even if I know that their destiny will be to develop
something serious.

>I do not blame my shelter as it was animal control and his fate was death
My shelter claims to give away only tested cats, but this was not the case
and now... they're even blaming me for causing a possible infection to the
last kitten I've adopted!!!
This is a pain, because it was their fault and now they're attacking me.

I'm really sad for this, because I never complained with them about giving
care to the cats they gave me in a poor health condition.

I have 4 cats and two of them are "mine": the older one (Trudi) comes from a
friend of mine who had a queen with kitten, the other one (Ginny) was found
by me on the road, and kept. These two are healthy and have never been to
the vet, except for the vaccination. The other two (Miro and Babette) come
from the same shelter and both developed rhinitis and had problems with
their eyes etc.
In these two months, since I took the 4th cat, I've been almost 20 times to
the vet!!! And it's going on...

But I think we will survive, eventually!


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